Implementation of the International Humanitarian Law in the Russia-Ukraine Conflict

Sylvia Masri, Surachman Surjaatmadja, Syaiful Anwar


It has been more than a year since Russia launched a military operation against Ukraine in February 2022. Civilians, mostly in Ukraine as the operation take place in the country, have been very vulnerable to the conflict, as shown by the high number of civilian fatalities and the great suffering the civilians have to endure due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Such condition raises a question how the international humanitarian law is being implemented during the conflict and this article tries to explain that. Using qualitative method, the article finds out that due to the enormous civilian fatalities and sufferings, experts of international relation concludes that Russia has violated the international humanitarian law and should be held accountable for war crimes. Realism theory, however, helps to explain why Russia has been performing military operation in Ukraine and will not likely to stop in the near future because it sees itself defending its national interests and as long as it still has the capability and capacity to do so, despite the abundant civilian victims.


International Humanitarian Law, Russia-Ukraine conflict, Security, National Interests

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